Mealy pud and clapshot

photo of kitchen wares
Photo by Andrea Davis on

This is a traditional Orcadian side dish of “neeps” (swedes) and “tatties” (potatoes) mashed together with marg and seasoned.  Neeps are one of the main vegetable crops and grow well in the fertile Orkney soil.  They’re added to the pan in slightly smaller chunks to be boiled with the potatoes and produce “Clapshot” which is lovely with mealy pudding and thick onion gravy.  I don’t think you need a recipe for onion gravy, but maybe mealy pudding?  Well all I know is that it’s chunks of onions cooked in a little tasty oil, then take off the heat to season well with salt and white pepper, add pinhead oatmeal and a little water to just bring together, then bake in a greased pan in the oven.  Oh and served with steamed shredded cabbage and sweet mint sauce too is brilliant.  You do know how to do a sweet mint sauce right?  If not it’s plenty of finely chopped and bruised mint leaves, pour on a little boiling water (usually from the tatties) add a table spoon of sugar, season with salt and pepper, then add a few dashes of malt vinegar and put in a little jug.

Just thought I’d also share this out there too, as one of those FYI things, that long before it became one huge oil terminal, my gran was born on Flotta, Orkney.  I wonder what she would make of it all now?  On typing this I’m also doing a little Internet search and see there’s eighty people living there and I’m not quite sure what I’m seeing here though: Flotta Z Battery

brown highland cattle on field of grass
Photo by Gabriela Palai on


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